18/02/2018 08:05 GMT

'Marcella' Series 1 Ending Explained, As Anna Friel Reprises Role For New Episodes

Struggling to recall what happened? We've got it covered.

Anna Friel is back as disturbed detective Marcella Backland, as crime noir ‘Marcella’ returns for a second series on Monday (19 February). 

The first run proved to be a massive hit for ITV in 2016, but nearly two years on from its conclusion, you’d be forgiven for not quite remembering how it all ended. 

Luckily for you, we’ve got that covered.


The series focused on an 11-year-old case of a serial killer who had suddenly become active again.

After returning to the murder squad following a career break, Marcella was assigned the case to investigate. Matters became complicated when she began to suspect she could somehow be involved in the murders, having been suffering from blackouts that caused memory loss.

However, the series finale saw the son of a construction company owner, Henry Gibson (the brother of murdered Grace Gibson, who herself had been having an affair with Marcella’s husband Jason), revealed as the serial killer.

The shock scenes saw him take best friend Matthew Neil hostage in his wine cellar, in an attempt to frame him for his crimes.

After Marcella arrived at Henry’s house, to find he had also stabbed her husband Jason, he admitted to the killings. 


But in a twist, Marcella had another of her blackouts, and came round to find she had tied him up and tried to suffocate him with a bag over his head - the same method he had used to kill some of his victims.

Realising what she had done, she gave him resuscitation, but her actions had compromised the police investigation, forcing her to find alternative evidence to hold him accountable for his crimes.

After finding bite marks on his shoulder, she was able to pin the kidnap of May Wier on him. However, that was not the end of Marcella’s troubles.

Detective Tim Williamson’s investigation of Andrew Barnes’ murder uncovered the fact she had doctored CCTV footage outside Grace’s house, which revealed Marcella had moved her body. 

Viewers were left wondering if this meant Marcella had really murdered her husband’s mistress during a blackout, and if she could be a copycat killer. 

Questions that need answering in series two

  • Is Marcella a killer?
  • Specifically, did Marcella kill Grace?
  • Or was Marcella covering for for the true culprit, Jason?
  • Will Tim expose for Marcella moving Grace’s body?
  • Will Marcella and Jason get back together?
  • What is causing Marcella’s blackouts?
  • What happened during all of her last set of blackouts?

While there’s plenty left to be answered as series two kicks off, the cast have warned not to expect resolutions straight away. 

During a recent interview with HuffPost UK, Rav Panthaki, who plays DI Rav Sangha, said: “It’s like a jigsaw. There’s all these pieces when Hans first starts, and then he walks away with this whole masterpiece.

“It’s so thoroughly thought through and intricate with twists and turns, and red herrings, but it will all make sense. The audience will come away satisfied with what happened.”

‘Marcella’ begins on Monday 19 February at 9pm on ITV. The entire first series is available to watch now on Netflix. 

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